War, Earnings And Economics Weigh On Stocks

Stocks were mixed Friday on earnings warnings, rising unemployment and a threat by Iraq that U.S. troops may face “unconventional” tactics.

The Nasdaq fell 13 to 1383, the S&P 500 climbed 2 to 878, and the Dow gained 36 to 8277. Volume declined to 1.23 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.36 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led 17-14 on the NYSE, but decliners led 16-14 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 53% on the NYSE, and 33% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 61-18 on the NYSE, and 90-36 on the Nasdaq.

After the close, Siebel warned, and Dow component Alcoa beat earnings estimates but came in light on revenues.

During the day, a slew of earnings warnings weighed on tech stocks. PeopleSoft , Sybase , STMicroelectronics , Neoware and Websense all fell on warnings.

Research in Motion gained 4% after beating estimates.

Yahoo slipped 1.4% on a $750 million convertible offering that raised speculation about what the cash-rich company might do with the money. But one analyst said Yahoo may just be taking advantage of extremely favorable terms.

Rambus spiked on another favorable court ruling, hitting a new 52-week high at $17 before pulling back.

Network Associates fell 7% on another acquisition.

Microsoft , down 2.5%, agreed to minor modifications to Windows. Also, MSN 8.5 was leaked.

IBM , down 1.4%, is offering free autonomic software.

AOL rose 2.5% after renewing its pact with Univision.

Level 3 slipped a penny after selling its hosting unit to Computer Sciences .

Akamai slipped 1.4% on news that it rejected al-Jazeera’s business.

And the Recording Industry Association of America sued some college students.

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